Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Berjaya Project

Creating a video is hard, it's not like taking a picture where we just have to snap the shutter button and and few seconds later its done. Your hands need to be steady if you're recording a movement, you need to find ways to record a better audio because a RM1000 external dslr microphone is just out of the question for an amateur filmmaker like me (unless we win!). People will stare, at you and the person you are recording, especially in public spaces, and I'm not comfortable of being stared at, and if you're carrying a DIY camera rig which looks really weird, it worsens the situation. I've learnt a lot while making my friend's pre-wedding video, and it truly reflects on this one. The berjaya project is like something that I have to do, to remind myself that I must learn from my mistakes. Previously, the audio was horrible, with winds whooshing around, we could barely hear the dialogue, although after I enhanced it by 500% after editing. I made wrong choices in lens selection, never use a f1.4 50mm lens with autofocus on while recording a movement, it destroys everything. Do not use autofocus while recording a conversation if you are using a dslr for recording, because you'll hear the focusing motor thingy turning. Do more than 3 takes per scene, because it will not only help your actors to rehearse and practice, but it will give you a hand-full of videos you could choose during editing, just imagine that your actors nailed a scene but later you found out that you accidentally touched the microphone jack and it makes that rushhghfsshh sound. It happened to me.

It took me several long showers, unimaginable amount of caffein, and countless hours of staring at people to come up with the video concept. All I could think about is I need to create some shocking moments in this video, and I won't tell you what it is because it will just ruin the viewing experience. So I called up my friend; ilmi. I presented my storyline, he added more ideas. We put together a storyboard, a shooting schedule, he tweeted about anyone who's interested of being apart of the project, and we got our actors, very talented actors. That was it, the beginning of our journey through the Berjaya youth short film competition.

Operation: Tampal
Location: KL sentral, KLCC.

The very next day, we rendezvous with our actors at KL sentral. We were late because we got lost on our way to the sentral, my bad. I did became more nervous than the actors before we started recording in the middle of KL sentral because people will stare and have like 'what the hack are you guys doing' faces but then when we started recording, and people started to smile, I got into the rhythm. It was a fun day, and because we did actually continue the It's not over theme, we decided that each time a stranger came and asked for help, we will help. A makcik working at mcdonalds came by and started to ask if we could translate a latter into english for her relative, saying it was really important and he will loose his visa or something, I didn't really get the whole story though, but I gave her my email saying that I will try to help, but she didn't email me the latter, so what to do.  

The whole crew

Recording in public areas, especially when we started to involve people we never met, thought me one thing; smile. It makes them comfortable and you can actually ask them to wave or something, and never forget to say thank you. The only thing that ruined the day was when a security guard at KLCC park approached us and said 'sorreey dik, tak boleh pegang pegang kad ni'. Ingat orang buat rally bersih 3.0 ke apa. Being apart of the Egyptian Revolution had thought me to fight, but we didn't, it was KLCC not Tahrir square. So we improvised the last scene, we didn't use the cards. Thank you pak cik guard. We should do a story about you someday.

Operation: Budak sekolah
Location: Sekolah Alam Megah, Subang Alam.

I never knew that morning school ends at 2pm, we did actually waited outside for about 2 hours worrying if that day was a school holiday because we could't see anyone with school uniforms. Recording infront of a school went alright. My fear is that a teacher or the school's security guard will chase us away, fearing us to be peadobears or something, as our actor did really look like  school girls (this is a compliment zana and fiqah). Doing a scene along a busy street was quite dangerous, we have to wait until the road was clear and quickly take the shot and do it again and again. Credits should go to our talented actors, who never whine about the heat and such, just don't change if someday you guys made it to the A-list alright. After all scenes were successfully recorded, we went straight to upstairs, subang for our lunch/tea/dinner. Excellent food plus great company is a good way to end a day.

You can see the rig, and budak sekolah yang ilmi kidnaped 

Operation: Deliver

I just hate editing. If you're great in sony vegas or adobe premiere or any other video editing software, do give me a tweet. I rather be under the heat shooting videos than sitting on a chair editing stuff, it's time consuming, it's dreadful, it's horrible. But I have to do it, with limited editing. iMovie is great, but for future videos, I'm thinking of explosions, fire, lightsabers and all those cool stuff.

After sleepless nights, and days. We managed to put together a video. Uploaded it to their website the night of the dateline. But considering I had to compress a HD video which was 800mb into a small quality 40mb video as a requirement from the officials, I was really concerned about the quality drop. So together with ilmi, we decided to drive all the way to hartamas, well ilmi was the one driving, I happened to be a sleepy GPS beside him, we didn't get any sleep the night before, so both were quite in the air. Nearly had an accident, but we survive. 

All we can do now, is to pray that Afdlin shauki, Aniu, and Gayatri Pillai will have a soft spot towards our video and list it among the top ten list! After that, it's up to you to vote, WAJIB undi!

Will keep you guys posted on the competition, your vote means 40 000 ringgit to me.



  1. I found your blog link on your twitter profile. serious tak boleh blah siap include dialog security guard tu. hihi. anyway, it's an awesome experience and thanks for giving me the chance. serious terharu tengok video tu *i dont know why actually* sampai tak tahu nak cakap camne dah. hehe. thanks koshary. and ohh, nice meeting you too. ^.^

  2. It's great that you guys can be comfortable infront of the camera, plus you guys could improvise the dialogue easily. For sure this won't be the end, its not over you know :D more projects coming up soon, for sure we'll give you a tweet!

    pak cik guard tu, actually i was across the pond kan, lawak sebenarnya tengok korang kena marah. haha. plus, those guys behind me yang memang tengok kita recording pun tumpang gelak :D

  3. please tell me that you uploaded the video on youtube or somewhere...nak tgk..